Blueprint Registry, a Seattle-based startup that aims to simplify the gift registry process, has raised a little more than $1 million in seed funding.
These funds are an extension of a round that began before Blueprint Registry was chosen for the first Target + Techstars accelerator program earlier this year. The company has raised a total of approximately $1.5 million in this seed round.
Nevin Shetty, Blueprint’s CEO, said the company will use the money to hire developers, fill other key positions and amp up its marketing push.
Blueprint allows people to create registries and wish lists using shoppable room-by-room blueprints of their homes that others can use to find and buy gifts from participating retailers, like Amazon.com, West Elm and Crate & Barrel. A group can go in on pricier items together, and people can also register for things like cash and travel expenses.
The company currently has 10 employees, and it just moved into the Galvanize co-working building in Seattle’s Pioneer Square neighborhood.
Though co-founders Shetty and Lizzy Ellingson both grew up in Seattle and graduated from the University of Washington, they met in New York City, during Hurricane Sandy in 2012. Shetty started the company in 2013 when he was trying to furnish his New York apartment and found the process frustrating. Around the same time, Ellingson was preparing to get married and managing three different gift registries. That too, was a pain.
So the two of them got to work figuring out a way to simplify gift registries. They said using room layouts as shopping tools paints a picture of how the gifts will fit into people’s lives, creating a little more satisfaction for the giver.
The company eventually moved from New York to Seattle. Ellingson had planned to move back here, and Shetty said Seattle is a better place to run a consumer-based startup than New York.
Shetty comes from a finance background, where he worked on hedge funds, real estate securities and other investment types. Ellingson is a former Microsoft UX designer, and she has founded a couple other startups in her career.
Blueprint has focused on weddings in the early going, but it is expanding out to include other big milestones that are often accompanied by loads of presents.
Shetty said the next step for the company involves “using Blueprint not only to help you with your wedding but also for baby showers, graduations and any new stage in your life.”